|Ben Barimen is just a typical kid who enjoys typical kid things. The fact that he is heir to Sunset Valley’s wealthiest estate, does not seem to faze him in the least. His parents and grandparents work hard to keep him grounded and humble. That is not to say that he is left wanting for anything, however.|
|From the youngest age, he is exposed to a very diverse world of skills and activities. One of his favorite things to do, seems to be fishing with his great-grandfather. He had been going with the elder Barimen even before he could hold a pole. His papa would talk about the best way to bait a hook, how to look for spot where fish were biting, and best of all, how to let one’s mind wander while waiting for a fish to bite.|
|When his parents tell him that he is going to be a big brother, he’s not sure exactly what that means at first. He had noticed his mother walking kinda funny, but didn’t know it meant anything. Anyhow, having another kid around all the time to play with, sounds like it will be fun.|
|When they bring Sarah home, she is anything but fun. She hardly plays at all, and is either smelly or screaming – and sometimes both. So he keeps out of her way most of the time.|
|His sister finally starts to show potential after her birthday, though. Just in time, too. It was either the stinky diapers were going to go, or he was.|
|Little Ben does not remain little for long, and his birthday into childhood is celebrated with a big party. Even though he doesn’t know many of them, it is pretty cool having so many sims bringing him loot for his birthday. The best part is when he gets to pretend that he is the Red Action Ranger, battling against a horde of polystyrene monsters. His dad does the best bad guy voices, so he usually is the one to get blasted by Ben and his other Action Ranger friends.|
|Later on, somewhere around the time he starts school, is when he figures out that his view of the world is not the same as everybody else’s view. He had no way of verbalizing his observations as a toddler. But now that he is able to communicate better, his parents, teachers, and doctors seem really worried. Whenever he talks about these things that are on his mind, they all get very upset. So he keeps it to himself most of the time; especially when other sims begin to make fun of him and his “problem”.|
|The doctors his mother takes him to don’t seem like real doctors. They just sit and talk to him and ask the same stupid questions over and over again; mostly about how he “feels” about stuff. Most of the time he just wants to tell them he feels bored. But he knows it will get him into trouble with mom and dad. There is one doctor who seems different, though. She actually seems to believe him, and not just think he’s crazy.|
|His entire life, even when he was just a baby, he has had this sense that the world is slowly disappearing, and soon there will be nothing left. Some parts are already gone, it’s just that nobody remembers there were ever there. It is more than just a “chemical imbalance in his brain” like all the other doctors seem to think. Ben doesn’t understand what it means, he just he knows what he knows. Doctor Kennedy seems to just listen to him and not ask dumb questions. She writes a lot, but he doesn’t mind that. The questions she does ask are smart and sometimes funny. Her questions have helped him realize that some really important stuff got broke. And now somebody has to fix it, or everything will be gone.|
|The best part about visiting her is the list she has asked him to make of things he thinks need fixing. For now it is just things like the busted shower. But pretty soon, it might help him focus on where the feeling is coming from. His mom and dad don’t like Dr. Kennedy because they say she is only “encouraging his behavior”; whatever that means. But Ben insists that she his helping him and making him feel less scared about his feelings.|
|And so, for now, Ben happily goes about his daily routine; sometimes pretending as if he is living in an imaginary world of colorful Action Rangers and giant foam monsters. Because, after all, he might not be real at all, either.|
Author’s Note – Welcome to Chapter 6 …sort of.
I plan to use a slightly different format during this chapter as I attempt to tell two stories at once. The events that happened at the end of chapter 5 have caused a few, very dramatic problems. I apologize if it seems confusing. To put things simply, “some really important stuff got broke. And now somebody has to fix it”. For those that have not noticed already, Kacey is the primary protagonist for the overall plotline. When in doubt about something, it probably points back to her. For those who have not yet read my background, I’m an oldtimer D&D junkie. I love big, epic quests (we used to call them campaigns). I’m treating many of my sims as I would characters in the campaigns I used to run as a GM. So sit back, enjoy, and feel free to ask questions!